Surgical management of driveline infections in patients with left ventricular assist devices

Marina Pieri, Anna Mara Scandroglio, Marcus Müller, Panagiotis Pergantis, Alexandra Kretzschmar, Friedrich Kaufmann, Volkmar Falk, Thomas Krabatsch, Georg Arlt, Evgenij Potapov, Marian Kukucka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND AND AIM OF THE STUDY: Driveline infections in patients with implantable left ventricular assist devices (VAD) carry increasing risk for pump infection, thromboembolic events, decreased quality of life, and increased hospitalization. We report our experience with a surgical technique for refractory driveline infections without mediastinitis consisting of translocation and wrapping of the driveline with greater omentum tissue. METHODS: We retrospectively reviewed data of VAD patients who underwent surgical treatment by translocation and wrapping with omentum for severe chronic driveline infection. RESULTS: Thirteen patients were treated between January 2010 and October 2015; 12 (92%) were male, and the mean age was 56 ± 14 years. Ten patients (77%) were managed with driveline sheathing with omentum and repositioning with a new exit site, and three (23%), suffering from driveline fistula, with driveline covering with omentum maintaining the previous exit site. Three episodes of postoperative bleeding (23%) required surgical revision. Twelve patients (92%) were discharged from the hospital and one (8%) died. Nine patients (69%) were free from infection at the time of discharge, and three (23%) had recurrence of infection within the first postoperative year. Only four patients (31%) required admission to the intensive care unit; overall median hospital stay was 23 days (range 7-205 days). CONCLUSIONS: Driveline relocation with use of omentum is a feasible and effective procedure in selected cases of chronic severe driveline infection. The risk for perioperative bleeding should be taken into consideration and carefully monitored.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)765 - 771
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Cardiac Surgery
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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